World Dog Surfing Championship in danger.
World Dog Surfing Championship in danger.

In ominous warning to World Surf League, World Dog Surfing Championship becomes too expensive to run

"This is due to the over 100%+ cost increases the event has experienced over the last three years..."

Surf fans around the globe were elated, yesterday, when the greatest to ever do it, Robert Kelly Slater, came out of retirement for the 27th time. The 2024 Championship Tour would certainly not feel the same without the 11x cup winner failing to give a real effort in the lineup and the aforementioned fans became buoyed that life beyond the cut might be glorious.

Dark clouds, however, are forming.

In an ominous warning to the “global home of surfing,” the much-loved World Dog Surfing Championship, conducted yearly in Pacifica, California, has become too expensive to run.


Organizers have hustled to the health insurer GoFundMe in a valiant attempt to raise funds. Per the posting:

This popular event brings thousands of people to the beaches of Pacifica, garners millions of dollars in national and worldwide pres s coverage to hundreds of millions of viewers and readers, helps local and regional businesses, brings awareness to our rescue dog charity partners, and the event even helps local schools in Pacifica (one school last year raised over $4,500 just from their parking fundraiser during the Championships).

The event is tentatively scheduled to take place on:
Saturday August 3, 2024
Linda Mar Beach
Pacifica, CA

However, at this time the event is not officially scheduled to take place, and all of those benefits may not be enjoyed by anyone. This is due to the over 100%+ cost increases the event has experienced over the last three years as far as permits, fees, and other event requirements that the local government has requested. The last two years we absorbed the financial losses that these incurred, but we cannot do so again for a third year.

Hope springs etc. but in the meantime, World Surf League officials are certainly taking note, perhaps imagining that if the foretold Saudis don’t appear with wads of riyals beneath pristine white thobes, it can make the rounds, Bailey Ladders hard hat in hand, in order to plug holes.

How much would you donate to keep professional surfing live?

I feel you can do better than that.

Dig deep, please.

Kelly Slater retires for one week.
Kelly Slater, in tears one week ago, now back on tour! | Photo: WSL

Breaking: Kelly Slater, 52, to come out of retirement and surf majors in Tahiti and Fiji!

And opens door to requalifying for 2025 tour!

After Kelly Slater’s twenty-seventh retirement announcement aired one week ago following his second-last finish at Margaret River, opening a geyser of teary tributes, Kelly Slater will now compete in tour majors in Fiji and Tahiti, as well as the Championship Series Gold Coast Pro, which runs from April 27 through to May 4.

Despite a horror season where he finished equal dead last, alongside beleaguered Brazilian non-Stormer Deivid Silva and Hawaiian Eli Hanneman, Kelly Slater was given wildcards by the WSL into the Pacific leg of the tour.

It ain’t for nothing, of course.

Kelly Slater has won Tahiti five times and Fiji, four, his surfing breathtaking, a savage, arrogant dance, taunting his opponents in his warlike way.

Watch Kelly Slater at Cloudbreak, a wave he’s surfed for almost forty years and which he knows as well as Pipeline. The way he balances his hindquarters, looking fierce and confident, those ears pulled back, purring like a kettle on the boil.

In a remarkable turn, with wins in both events Kelly Slater can now requalify for the 2025 tour.

Tour observers will remember the first time Kelly Slater retired iin 1998, the then six-time world champ having just-turned twenty-six. He competed sporadically over the next few years, winning Pipe in 1999 and the Eddie in 2002, before re-joining the tour to take on Andy Irons head-on, hinting at retirement every year thereafter.

In 2018, and piggybacking Joel Parkinson’s retirement announcement at J-Bay, he said he’d officially quit by the end of the following year at age forty-seven. 

Other retirement announcements can be found here, here, here and here. 

San Diego Lifeguard Todd Rice in hospital. Photo: Fox 5 News
San Diego Lifeguard Todd Rice in hospital. Photo: Fox 5 News

San Diego lifeguard hit by boat while surfing in “freak accident”

“Right now I’m fighting for my leg, to keep it. It’s not just me, it’s the whole tribe, it’s a whole group."

A San Diego lifeguard is back home after nearly losing his life while surfing Nicaragua. Todd Rice, 23, was in the Central American country enjoying a fine pulse of swell when a panga ran him over deeply cutting his leg. The hit nearly caused Rice to lose consciousness but he mustered the internal fortitude to fashion a tourniquet from his leash and control the bleeding until help arrived.

“I came to terms that for one, at that point, I might die. So I said my goodbyes to the gentleman that was holding my head and told him to say certain things to my family. And then secondary, if I live, I’ve already come to terms that I might lose my leg,” Rice told Fox 5 news.

When his fellow lifeguards heard about the accident, they immediately sprang into action, coordinating with U.S. Embassy in Managua. “Seeing it bring together the service, and we’re there to facilitate and remind everyone within the service and the community that we are a family,” Hailey Westwood, president of the San Diego Lifeguard Association, declared.

Of course, being home presents its own challenges, what with the United States’ prohibitively expensive health care costs. The lifeguards are helping their comrade there too, though, setting up a GoFundMe which opens thusly:

Todd Rice is a staple in the community. Through his dedication to lifeguarding, he has made an impact from Ocean Beach to the shores of Blacks. He also has a great presence in the fishing and surfing communities, just a few of his many passions. The San Diego Lifesaving Association is happy to support one of our own lifeguards through this difficult time.

$43,279 of a $100,000 goal has already been raised.

“Right now I’m fighting for my leg, to keep it. It’s not just me, it’s the whole tribe, it’s a whole group. I feel like it’s the whole city that’s helping me out in this process,” Rice stated.

Friendship is a wonderful thing.

Donate here if moved.

German Sebastian Steudnter (insert) rubbing his claim in Brazil's face.
German Sebastian Steudnter (insert) rubbing his claim in Brazil's face.

Brazil in mourning after German Sebastian Steudtner drops biggest claim in surfing history!

Pride and the fall.

The rise of Brazilian surfing, over the past two decades, has brought much joy and excitement to this sometimes staid Pastime of Kings. Flash, pizzazz, paroxysms of raw emotion. In a word, passion. One of the greatest displays of this bossa nova heartbeat is, undoubtedly, the claim.

What was once an awkward physical spasm after satisfactory completion of a wave professionally surfed transformed to art in the manicured fingers of our handsome Portuguese adjacent brothers. Classic fist pumps, finger snaps, full-bodied yells punctuating 4.6s and 5.4s.

The claim became so essentially Brazilian that non-Brazilians who attempt appear to be haltingly speaking a foreign language.


Awkward, that is, until the German mega-wave rider Sebastian Steudnter just dropped the biggest claim in history thereby shattering  Brazil’s hold on the craft.

Surfing an unsurfable wave.

But you certainly read about the 93.7 foot Nazare bomb Steudnter bagged two months ago. The historic slide is considered to be the biggest wave ever, though the World Surf League with all its engineering and science experts must ratify the exact height. In any case, biggest ever but the unsurfable bit was a surprising hammer.

Per the Daily Mail:

‘Mission Wave Alpha’ has seen (Sebastian Steudnter) train for the perfect wave for years, and the extreme athlete decided that the time was right to surf the biggest waves of his life when Nazaré saw ‘historic’ conditions back in February.

“It was the biggest storm and the biggest waves in the past three or four years. We were, for the first time, surfing the biggest waves in stormy conditions which were considered unsurfable,” he said.

And there we have it.

But have you ever surfed an unsurfable wave?

How did it feel beneath your pioneering feet?

Most importantly, though, how did you claim?

Alex Smith, Koa Smith, Koa Rothman and Travis Smith.
Sunrise Shack founders Alex Smith, Koa Smith, Koa Rothman and Travis Smith. A lonely teenage girl's dream!

“World’s sexiest surfers” raise almost one million dollars as bowls-and-coffee-joint Sunrise Shack goes public!

Cute lil joint across the road from Sunset Beach and with tentacles across Oahu valued at an astonishing $22.5 mill.

Eight years back Koa Smith, his bros Alex and Travis, and Koa Rothman, opened up a cute lil coffee and bowls joint called Sunrise Shack amid a plumeria farm and just across the road from world famous Sunset Beach.

The initial offering was pretty basic, coffees, tea, papaya bowls, but the place soon blossomed into the most popular eatery on the North Shore with its zeitgeist-y feel-good menu of wellness shots, smoothie bowls, banana bread and avocado toast.

Now, there’s Sunrise Shacks all over Oahu, Waikiki, Ala Moana Center, Kailua, Shark’s Cove as well as Sunset with predicated revenues set to hit five mill this year.

The four wildly handsome Hawaiian-born surfers and models are ambitious as hell.

And y’ain’t gonna become a billionaire by shucking coconuts across the road from Sunset the rest of your life. And, so, after valuing ‘emselves at $22..5 mill, the gang used the crowdfund portal start engine to offer shares in their biz.

One share was set at $7.50 with a minimum buy-in of $240.

A raft of bonuses were set to lure investors with anyone dropping one hundred gees on their Ohana package getting “one of the founders’ signed surfboards, a flight to Hawaii from the US to surf and have a surf lesson with one of the founders, a custom Ohana shirt, an invitation to an investor’s party on Oahu, and 12% bonus shares.”

At the close of the offering on April 16, $786,620 had been raised.

The surfers plan to use the money to expand onto the US mainland.

Koa Smith, meanwhile, a man who is widely regarded “the world’s sexiest surfer” and who ain’t afraid to bareback the biggest waves in the world, is offering seven-day online courses for anyone who might feel a little off kilter.

Smith became qualified to deliver the course after earning a certificate of completion from the charismatic faith healer Joe Dispenza.

The sell is almost as compelling as the Sunrise Shack’s share offer

“Koa Smith is a professional surfer, thirty-second famed barrel rider, entrepreneur and true showman. While his life looks idyllic from the outside; sunshine, nature, travel & nonstop adventure, he struggles to balance it all just like the rest of us.
“Through a severe head injury that left him with crippling depression, the pressure of competition and the bombardment of business demands, he realized that something needed to change. He wanted to take charge of his mental game. In turn, through extensive research and support, he developed a mental exercise routine, something that he commits to every morning.

“A routine that puts him in the driver seat before the chaos of the world even has a chance to make an impression. His mental game changed everything and now he wants to share his morning routine with you. Are you ready to transform your mental game? $37.”

BeachGrit writer Steve Rees paid his thirty-seven dollars and completed the course a few months back. 

“Koa Smith is a genuinely likeable character who is passionate about helping people get right in the head,” reported Rees. “Maybe a grain of salt is needed to digest Koa’s program, all in good fun, etc.”